Bullying in Higher Ed - Temple University Beasley School of Law

 Fay R. Trachtenberg, Esq.
 Associate University Counsel
 Temple University
 Unique environment
 Student Issues
 Employee Issues
 Faculty
 Staff
 Professionals
How do we manage their conduct?
Most colleges and universities have specific
codes of conduct for students and
employment standards for faculty and staff.
 Create an educational and work environment free
from uncivil and potentially unlawful behavior
 conduct that violates common decency (civility)
 threatens the safety, and rights of others in the
 Delineate the consequences of violating these
Very few have specific policies on bullying
Bullying may be directly referenced
codes/policies but more often than not, these
codes/policies prohibit generalized uncivil
Bullying is not recognized as per se illegal
Other avenues to hold a ‘bully’ responsible:
Harassment based on protected
Code of Conduct Violations (Students)
Employee Manual Standards of Conduct
(Faculty and staff)
Computer/Technology Usage Policies –
 Perception that those in charge:
 Fail to define bullying as problematic behavior
 Tolerate Bullying behavior
 Set employees or students against each other for rewards
 Productivity = Promotion
 Good Grades = Law Review/Prestigious Residency
 Leave victims to fend for themselves
 Reliance on:
Codes of Conduct (Students)
Employment Standards (Employees)
 Professional Codes of Ethics/Oaths
 Training
 Counseling/Coaching
 Consequences
 Delineate a variety of avenues to pursue assistance
No cognizable duty to protect
No responsibility to stand in loco parentis
No custodial relationship
Keep in mind:
 Students training to be professionals
 Inherent in the situation is the fact that they are adults and should be
treated as such
 Need to be able to manage the instances of incivility in their learning
environment so that they can have the tools to do so in their work
 Schools should communicate the avenues to pursue assistance if needed
(Dean of Students/Student Affairs/Care Team)
 Need to develop the ability to know when to ask for help and be their
own best advocate
 Size of many professional schools smaller than undergrad
 Faculty/Administration more attuned to what is going on
 Emphasize code of professional ethics
 Model appropriate professional behavior
Liability theories suggested
 Negligence
 University/Student Relationship
 Landlord – Tenant
 Landowner/Business Invitee
 All deal with criminal actions and most jurisdictions do not
consider bullying to be criminal.
 Despite this, behavior can rise to the level of being criminally
actionable (Tyler Clemente case)
 Liken bullying to harassment
 1986 - Meritor Savings Bank, FSB v. Vinson – The Supreme Court first
recognized “sexual harassment” as a violation of Title VII and
established the standards for levels of employer liability
 1998- Oncale v. Sundowner Offshore Services, Inc – Supreme Court
upholds complaint based on same sex harassment.
 1998 - Faragher v. City of Boca Raton - Supreme Court decision that
establishes that an
 employer is subject to vicarious liability for hostile environment created
by a supervisor
 Exposure about the issue
 Acknowledging Harm
 Education
Examples of current policies/codes of conduct in Higher
In compliance with New Jer sey Executive Order #49, Rowan Univer sity is
committed to ensuring the safety and security of the Univer sity’s workplace.
Violence against employees can take many forms including harassment or
bullying , intimidation, threats, threatening behavior (with or without the use
of technology) and physical acts of violence.
Threats and/or threatening behavior, or acts of violence by Univer sity
employees against themselves, other staf f member s, faculty, students,
visitor s or other individuals while on Univer sity proper ty or using Univer sity
facilities will not be tolerated and are causes for removal from the
workplace and may result in discipline including possible termination of
Each Univer sity employee has a responsibility to repor t any threatening or
violent behavior when a member of the Univer sity community or visitor s to
the campus exhibits such behavior.
Rowan University Workplace Violence Policy in its entirety can be found at:
NJ Executive Order 49 http://www.nj.gov/infobank/circular/eow49.htm
Th e fo l low ing pro ce dure s a ppl y to c l a ssrooms a s we l l a s s t ude n t i n te ra ctions w i th
i n s t ruc tor s i n l a bs , o f fi c e s a n d ot h e r c a m pus l e a rning e nv iro nment s.
Rowa n Un i ver sit y re c o g niz es t h a t s t ude n t s pl ay a m a j or pa r t i n c re a t i ng a n d
s uppo r t i n g t h e e duc a t i o nal e nv ironme nt a n d be l i eves t h a t s t ude n t s h ave a ri g h t to
l e a rn a n d a re s po n sibilit y to pa r t i c i pa te i n t h e l e a rnin g pro c e s s . Wh i l e Rowa n
Un i ver sit y i s c o m mit te d to t h e fun da m e nt al pri n c i ples o f fre e do m o f s pe e c h,
i n c ludi ng c o n t rover sial po s it ions t a ke n i n t h e c l a ssro om, a l l t y pe s o f s pe e c h a n d
be h av ior m us t be ba l a n c ed w i t h pri n c i ples o f a ppro pri a te c l a ssro om be h av ior.
Two l evels o f D i s rupti on
Leve l I – exa m ples i n c lude : s l e eping i n c l a s s, pe r s iste nt s pe a king w i t h o ut
pe rm i ssion , i n a ppro priate us e o f e l e c t ro nic dev i c es…
Leve l II – exa m pl es i n c l ude: e n g aging i n phy s i c al v i o lenc e, t h re a t s , h a ra s sment ,
i n t i mida t ion, b u l ly ing , c o e rc i o n, a n d/ o r ot h e r c o n duc t w h i c h t h re a te n s o r
e n da n ger s t h e h e a lt h o r s a fet y o f a ny pe r s o n a s de s c ri bed i n t h e St ude n t Co de o f
Co n duc t
h t t p: / / w w w. rowan. edu/ provost /policies/doc ument s/Classro omBehavio rPolic y. 04 .
1 2 _ 0 01 . pdf
I n r e s p o n s e to t h e ev e n t s a t Ru t g e r s U n i v e r s i t y, M i l l e r s v i l le ’ s I n te r i m A s s i s t a n t to t h e
P r e s i d en t f o r S o c i a l E q u i t y a n d D i v e r s i t y s e n t o u t a m e m o to t h e U n i v e r s i t y c o m mun i t y
a b o u t C y b e r b u l ly i n g .
Recent events involving the misuse of the Internet have raised concern on campuses
n a t i o n a l l y. T h i s h e i g h t e n e d c o n c e r n p r e s e n t s a n o p p o r t u n i t y t o r e m i n d u s a l l o f t h e i n h e r e n t
responsibility that defines what it means to be a member of the Millersville campus
c o m m u n i t y. A s f a c u l t y, s t u d e n t s , s t a f f a n d a d m i n i s t r a t o r s , w e s h a r e a c o l l e c t i v e r e s p o n s i b i l i t y t o
ensure that Millersville University is a place that values the diversity of opinion and perspectives,
and where each member of our community can feel safe and supported.
T h e t r a g i c e v e n t s l a s t y e a r a t R u t g e r s U n i v e r s i t y, U n i v e r s i t y o f M i c h i g a n , a n d h i g h s c h o o l s a c r o s s
t h e c o u n t r y, c o u p l e d w i t h t h e r e c e n t m o v i e " T h e S o c i a l N e t w o r k " , u n d e r s c o r e t h e h u g e c h a n g e s
taking place in our world - the easy access to instant communication and the power people have
to use that networking for greater "interconnectedness," but also the possibility that it can be
used for thoughtless or malicious aims. The evolving use of technology - social networking sites
( M y S p a c e , F a c e b o o k ) , b l o g s , t e x t m e s s a g i n g , w e b c a m s , a n d Tw i t t e r, j u s t t o n a m e a f e w , a r e
wonder ful ways the world stays connected. At the same time, these platforms present
oppor tunities for misuse and for people to harm others when the technology is used without
r e g a r d t o c o n s e q u e n c e s a n d w i t h o u t r e s p e c t f o r o n e a n o t h e r.
Please take the time to thoughtfully reflect on your own attitudes and beliefs about privacy and
respect for others. It is essential for the safety and well -being of our campus community and our
s o c i e t y t h a t w e c o n t i n u e t o e n s u r e t h e h i g h e s t l e v e l o f r e s p e c t , i n t e g r i t y, a n d d e c e n c y i n o u r
i n t e r a c t i o n s w i t h o n e a n o t h e r. T h i s i s i n f a c t , t h e M i l l e r s v i l l e w a y, a n d s t r i k e s a t t h e v e r y c o r e o f
our institutional values, mission and strategic directions.
h t t p : / / w w w. m il l e r s v i ll e . e d u/ s o c ia l e q / c y b e r - b ul l yi n g - p o l i cy.p h p
On their Of fice of Student Af fair s Compliance website, Rutgers
University has a published Statement of Principles that says, in par t:
“ Intolerance, bigotr y and bullying are antithetical to the values of the
univer sity, and unacceptable within the Rutger s community. Verbal assault,
harassment, intimidation, bullying or defamation inter feres with the mission
of the univer sity and each member of this community is expected to be
suf ficiently tolerant of other s so that all students are free to pur sue their
goals in an open environment, able to par ticipate in the free exchange of
ideas, and able to share equally in the benefits of our educational
oppor tunities .
Beyond that, each member of the community is encouraged to do all that
she or he can to ensure that the univer sity is fair, humane, and responsible
to all students. The Policy A gainst Verbal Assault, Harassment, Intimidation,
Bullying and Defamation seeks to establish cer tain minimum standards in
order for the community to be able to fulfill its mission .”
T h e r e i s a d i r e c t l i n k t o t h e i r P o l i c y A g a i n s t Ve r b a l A s s a u l t , H a r a s s m e n t , I n t i m i d a t i o n , B u l l y i n g
and Defamation as well as contacts at each campus who have been identified to handle
Policy A gainst Verbal Assault, Harassment, Intimidation, Bullying
and Defamation
B u l ly i n g , i n t i m id a t i o n , a n d h a r a s s m e n t: a p e r s o n a c t s w i t h t h e p u r p o s e to b u l l y,
i n t i m id a te , a n d h a r a s s a n o t h e r b y :
- M a k i n g , o r c a u s i n g to b e m a d e , a c o m m un i ca t i o n o r c o m m un i ca t i o n s ( i n c l ud i n g t h e
u s e o f e l e c t ro n i c a n d / o r s o c i al m e d i a ) a n o ny m o us l y o r a t ex t r em e l y i n c o nv e ni e n t
h o u r s , o r i n o f f e n s i v el y c o a r s e l a n g ua g e , o r a ny o t h e r m a n n e r l i ke l y to c a u s e
a n n oya n c e o r a l a r m ; o r
- S u b j e c t in g a n o t h e r to s t r i k i n g , k i c ki n g , s h o v i n g , o r o t h e r o f fe n s i ve to uc h i n g , o r
t h r e a te n i n g to d o s o ; o r
- E n g a g i ng i n a ny o t h e r c o u r s e o f a l a r m i n g c o n d uc t o r o f r e p e a te d l y c o m mi t te d ac t s
w i t h p u r p o s e to a l a r m o r s e r i o us l y a n n oy s u c h o t h e r p e r s o n , s u c h t h a t t h e
b e h av i o r s u b s t a n t ia l l y d i s r up t s o r i n te r fe r e s w i t h t h e o r d e r ly o p e r a t io n o f t h e
i n s t i t ut i on o r t h e r i g h t s o f o t h e r s t u d e n t s to p a r t i ci p a te i n o r b e n e f i t f r o m t h e
e d u c a t io n a l p r o g r a m .
Fo r f u l l p o l i c y – p l e a s e s e e :
h t t p : / / c o mp l i a nc e . r ut g e r s . e d u/ i ma g e s / up lo a d s / fi le / Po li cy _ A g a i n s t _B ull y in g _ H a r a s s
m e n t _ A s s a ul t _I n t i mi d a t i o n _ De f a m a t io n . p d f
In order to reinforce institutional goals of nondiscrimination,
tolerance, and civility, the following policy against verbal
assault, harassment, intimidation, bullying, and defamation is
intended to inform students that the verbal assault, harassment,
intimidation, bullying and defamation of others violates
acceptable standards of conduct within the university.
(This policy is not intended to supersede the university's policy
against sexual harassment.)
Policy on Harassment, Intimidation and Bullying
http://kean.edu/KU/Poli cy -on-Harassment -Intimidati on -and -Bull ying
Students are prohibited from engaging in harassment,
intimidation or bullying.
A student will be found responsible for harassment,
intimidation or bullying if he or she engages in conduct,
including any gesture, written, verbal or physical act, or any
electronic communication (which includes e -mails, text
messages, and Internet postings on web -sites or other social
media), whether it be a single incident or series of incidents,
that occurs on the University’s campus, through use of
University facilities, or at any function sponsored by the
University or any University -related organization, on or of f campus; that is so severe or pervasive and objectively
of fensive that it substantially disrupts or interferes with the
orderly operation of the University or the rights of any student
or other member of the University community; and that:
1 . involves intimidation or threats to another person's safety,
rights of personal privacy and property,
academic pursuits, University employment, or participation in
activities sponsored by the University
or organizations or groups related to the University; or
2. a reasonable person should know, under the circumstances,
will have the ef fect of insulting or
demeaning any student or group of students; or
3. creates an intimidating or hostile environment by
substantially interfering with a student’s education,
or by materially impairing the academic pursuits,
employment or participation of any person or group in
the University community, or by severely or
pervasively causing physical or emotional harm to the
student or other member of the University
community; or
4. a reasonable person should know, under the
circumstances, will have the effect of physically or
emotionally harming a student or other person or
damaging the person’s property or placing him/her in
reasonable fear of physical or emotional harm to
his/her person, or to any member of that person's
family or household, or of damage to his/her
 Policy
 Eastern Washington University will not tolerate bullying behavior directed toward
any member of the university community or to any person on university property.
 Scope
 All EWU programs (educational) and employment. Members, visitors, guests must
Reprisal or Retaliation
Definition of Bullying
Complaint Process
Sanctions or Disciplinar y Actions
 Employees, Students and Guests
 University President
 University Officials and Supervisory Employees
 Where to Report Bullying
 Grid (Preferred Official and Alternate Official)
 Informal Complaint Process
 Includes informal meeting between parties
 Mediation
 Formal Complaint Process
 Bullying Complaint Form
 Workplace Bullying
 Repeated and unreasonable actions of individuals (or a group) directed
towards an employee (or a group of employees), which is intended to
intimidate and create a risk to the health and safety of the employee(s).
 Points out dif ferences from harassment
 Harassment is one type of illegal discrimination and is defined as offensive
and unwelcome conduct, serious enough to adversely affect the terms and
conditions of a person's employment, which occurs because of the person's
protected class, and can be imputed to the employer. Protected classes in
employment are race/color, creed (religion), national origin, sex, marital
status, disability, and sexual orientation/gender identity.
 Examples of what to do
 Employee
 Employer
Employee Conduct
12.3 Violence in the Workplace
Temple University is committed to providing a safe, healthful workplace that is free from violence or
threats of violence. For purposes of this employment standard, workplace violence is any violent or
potentially threatening behavior that arises from or occurs in the workplace that affects university
faculty, employees, students and visitors.
Temple University does not tolerate behavior, whether direct or through the use of university facilities,
property or resources, that:
o is violent.
o threatens violence.
o harasses or intimidates others, including stalking or bullying behavior.
o interferes with an individual’s legal rights of movement or expression.
o disrupts the workplace, the academic environment or the university’s ability to provide service to the
V i o le n t o r t h r e a te n i n g b e h av i o r c a n i n c lud e p hy s i c a l a c t s , o r a l o r w r i t te n
s t a te m en t s , h a r a s s in g t e l e p h o n e c a l ls , g e s t ur e s a n d e x p r e s s i o n s , o r b e h av io r s
s u c h a s s t a lk i n g o r b u ll y in g .
Individuals who engage in any conduct prohibited by this standard may be banned from
u n i v e r s i t y p r o p e r t y, a n d m a y b e s u b j e c t t o d i s c h a r g e o r o t h e r d i s c i p l i n a r y a c t i o n , a r r e s t
and/or criminal prosecution.
This policy applies to all work locations including of fices, work sites, vehicles and field
T h e u n i v e r s i t y t a k e s r e p o r t s o f t h r e a t e n i n g o r v i o l e n t w o r k p l a c e i n c i d e n t s s e r i o u s l y.
Employees, super visors and managers should contact the Human Resources Depar tment at
7 - 2 2 01 a n d C a m p u s P o l i c e a t 1 - 1 2 3 4 i m m e d i a t e l y t o r e p o r t a n y t h r e a t s t h a t t h e y h a v e
witnessed, received, or have been told that another person has witnessed or received.
Employees should also repor t any behavior they have witnessed that they regard as
threatening or violent when that behavior is job -related or might be carried out on university o w n e d o r l e a s e d p r o p e r t y.
Responsibility for the enforcement of the rules of the university
rests with all the members of the Temple community. University
rules should serve as a guide for high personal standards. It is
the student’s responsibility to:
 1 . Foster an environment conducive to continued intellectual
and educational stimulation within the university free from
unlawful harassment by other members of the community;
 2. Foster the maintenance of physical and mental health, the
safety and welfare of each member of the community; and
 3. Respect the rights of others.
 Sanctions
Letter of Reprimand
Loss of privileges
Service Sanctions
University Housing Suspension or Expulsion
University Suspension or Expulsion
Revocation of Admission or Degree
http://policies.temple.edu/getdoc.asp?policy_no=03.70.12 .
 Code of conduct violations
 Disciplinary hearings – University Disciplinary Committee
 Finding of responsibility could result in:
Disciplinary Hold placed on students record until sanctions are
 Create Policies
 Education and Training
 Counseling/Coaching
 Understand the Roles and Responsibilities

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